Posted Feb 13th 2013 10:16AM
Not content to let Volkswagen have all of the fun with its GTI and Golf R, Audi is rebooting its five-door S3 Sportback with rather monstrous power. Headed for an official unveil at this year's Geneva Motor Show, the new S3 rolls out with a 300-horsepower, 280-pound-feet of torque turbocharged 2.0-litre TFSI engine under the hood. The four-cylinder powerplant is strong enough to shove the Sportback to 100 kilometres per hour in just 5.0 seconds when connected to the optional S-Tronic gearbox, or 5.5 seconds with the traditional manual transmission. Top speed is said to be an electronically governed 250 km/h (155 mph). Almost as impressive as those performance figures are the fuel economy ratings: the S- S3 is said to average 6.9 L/100 km (34 miles per gallon).
All S3 Sportback models offer Quattro all-wheel drive, ride on a sport-tuned suspension tuned to a lower ride height (about one inch) versus the standard Audi A3. 18-inch wheels with 225-section tires are standard equipment, and 340 mm front brakes should offer serious stopping ability.
Audi has done a lot of work shedding pounds from this latest MQB-architecture S3, as well. The car has a curb weight of 1,445 kilograms (3,185 lbs) – 70 kilograms (154 lbs) less than the outgoing model. Most of this reduction in weight is on account of the body.
The last generation S3 was never shipped to North America for sale, and Audi has given us no indication thus far that this one will be. We'll expect to pin down a firm answer to that when we see the S3 Sportback roll onto stage at in Geneva.
Related GalleryAudi S3 Sportback
The new Audi S3 Sportback
- New 2.0 TFSI with 221 kW (300 hp) and 380 Nm (280.27 lb-ft) of torque, but just 6.9 liters per
100 km (34.09 US mpg)
- From 0 to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 5.0 seconds
- Five doors for even better functionality
Audi S3 Sportback
221 kW (300 hp). 380 Nm (280.27 lb-ft) of torque. From 0 to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 5.0 seconds. The new Audi S3 Sportback offers best-in-class performance. Its efficiency is also exemplary. The 2.0 TFSI averages just 6.9 liters per 100 km (34.09 US mpg).
The four-cylinder engine in the S3 Sportback has been overhauled. The only thing in common with its predecessor is a displacement of 1,984 cc. Its rated output of 221 kW (300 hp) is available at 5,500 rpm; maximum torque of 380 Nm (280.27 lb-ft) is constantly available from 1,800 to 5,500 rpm.
The high-performance four-cylinder engine responds immediately to the driver's wishes and boasts a sportily sonorous sound. When the Audi drive select system is in dynamic mode, the engine's power is also underscored acoustically. The 2.0 TFSI provides power and exemplary efficiency alike by relying on many new technologies, ranging from dual injection through the Audi valvelift system and an exhaust manifold integrated within the cylinder head to innovative thermal management.
When equipped with the optional six-speed S tronic, the S3 Sportback sprints from 0 to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in only 5.0 seconds. The six-speed manual transmission needs just five-tenths of a second more. Top speed is electronically governed at 250 km/h (155.34 mph). Launch Control delivers the engine's power to the road with defined tire slip. The 2.0 TFSI consumes just 6.9 liters per 100 km (34.09 US mpg) on average when paired with the S tronic (7.0 liters [33.60 US mpg] with the manual transmission). This engine thus requires 1.5 liters per 100 km less compared to the previous S3 Sportback.
The lower gears of both transmissions are tightly spaced for sporty performance while the tall sixth gear reduces fuel consumption. The dual-clutch transmission can be controlled via optional shift paddles on the steering wheel and offers the automatic modes D and S in addition to manual mode.
Equipped with quattro permanent all-wheel drive and a redesigned multi-plate clutch, this new high-end vehicle in the model line can accelerate more quickly and safely when exiting a corner. It is dynamic and stable in all conditions, even rain or snow.
The front axle is 52 millimeters (2.05 in) farther forward compared to the previous model. The 2.0 TFSI is more than five kilograms (11.02 lb) lighter than the previous engine and is tilted backward by 12 degrees.
In addition to a sophisticated suspension and the S sport suspension, which lowers the body by 25 millimeters (0.98 in), the axle-load distribution (59% to 41%, front to rear) and new, progressive steering contribute significantly to sporty handling. The key to progressive steering is that steering movements determine the steering ratio. This results in stable and virtually neutral steering characteristics for outstanding precision during sporty driving and easier steering while parking.
The new Audi S3 Sportback features 7.5 J x 18 wheels. The low rolling resistance of the 225/40-series tires helps reduce fuel consumption. The calipers of the large brakes, which measure 340 millimeters (13.39 in) in diameter up front, are painted black and bear S logos. They can optionally be red. The electromechanical parking brake governs the rear axle. Electronic Stabilization Control (ESC) reflects latest-generation technology.
The new S3 Sportback comes standard with Audi drive select. This system handles characteristics of the electronic gas pedal, shift points of the optional S tronic and the steering ratio for progressive steering.
At the push of a button, the driver specifies whether these systems should operate in comfort, auto, dynamic or efficiency mode. An additional mode, individual, is available in models equipped with the MMI Radio or above. The optional Audi magnetic ride system, which situationally regulates the shock absorbers, is also controlled via Audi drive select.
Lightweight construction also contributes significantly to the very dynamic performance of the Audi S3 Sportback. This five-door car has a curb weight of 1,445 kilograms (3,185.68 lb) – 70 kilograms (154.32 lb) less than the previous model. Most of this reduction in weight is on account of the body.